Vol. 11 No. 3                                                                                                                 Wednesday January 11, 2012

     Right now amidst all the prognostications of things to come in 2012 and ample amounts of soul searching about 2011, a major driver of the air cargo business, Information Technology (IT) is at an absolute water shed moment in time, as a novel device (with others to follow) could render the extensive and high cost air cargo tracking IT infrastructure in place irrelevant and messaging system irrelevant and bypassed at the speed of an express shipment.
     Read on and learn about OnAsset’s SENTRY 400 FlightSafe™.
     The only thing Sentry 400 doesn't handle is making a booking and at this point it doesn't care about airline-specific air waybill information whatsoever, yet there is potential to cross reference it and include flight number information.
     SENTRY 400 has the potential to dramatically change the industry, subject to the cost of this technology to shippers.
     It could be used for all air cargo in the foreseeable future. The shippers can have what they want without depending on the airlines and forwarders.
     American Airlines Cargo, United, Delta and Southwest Cargo are talking about the virtual monitoring system dreamed up by a company in Texas called OnAsset Intelligence, Inc.
     Branded the SENTRY 400 FlightSafe™ the payoff is a compact device that right now can report location, environmental sensing while also providing virtual security-fencing and temperature monitoring for air cargo shipments.
     The system, reportedly leased a minimum of 12 months from OnAsset is about as big as an iPad and actually smaller than an 8 1/2 by 11 piece of paper.
     SENTRY 400 rides inside the shipment.
     The device pioneers utilization of proprietary technology that turns itself off while in flight to meet FAA requirements.
     So in one sense shippers can assume that if they are not getting any messages from the doohickey, their air cargo is in the air. It is a stand-alone system that allows a shipper to go to the web-based VisionPlatform for status information.
     At American Airlines Cargo, Roger Samways, Managing Director Global Accounts and Sales Strategy notes that the Texas-based carrier is no new kid on the block as AA begins it's fourth year of involvement with OnAsset.
     “We were actually the first carrier to get involved with OnAsset in 2008 working with their R&D division.
     “OnAsset was good enough to give us visibility of the devices as they evolved.
     “The big challenge and reason it has taken so long to get the device to market is because it carries a radio transmitter and the collateral FAA concern with having a device such as this in operation whilst an aircraft is in transit.
     “The other factor was our practice of testing and monitoring customer usage and reaction.
     “OnAsset developed a sophisticated set of triggers that tell the device when it has been loaded on an aircraft, at which point the device shuts itself off, not transmitting but continually collecting information.
     “When the aircraft arrives at destination the same set of triggers turn the device back to broadcast again sending an all activity record to the shipper.
     "The device continues to report monitoring the package until the shipment is delivered.
     “We think that there are plenty of applications for this new technology—in fact, we are pretty excited about it.
     "Last year we ran a pilot program with SENTRY 400 FlightSafe™ that was quite successful and since that time we have expanded utilization of the system across our global network.
     “Today a forwarder can use SENTRY on any shipment flown on American Airlines main line fleet anywhere in the world.
     “So far we have seen the system typically in use on pharmaceutical and very valuable shipments.
     “A number of our accounts are utilizing the system on a regular or pilot basis,” Roger Samways said.
     “But we think that there is plenty more we will do with SENTRY 400 FlightSafe™, so stay tuned.”

Robbie Anderson

Neel Shah

Wally Devereaux

     “It’s a potent combination for our customers” said Robbie Anderson, President United Cargo, “delivering peace of mind, and enhanced visibility over several of our key products: UASecure high value, QuickPak and EXP express offerings as well as TempControl,” he added.
     Neel Shah, Senior Vice President and Chief Cargo Officer at Delta Airlines said:
     “We accept the OnAsset device on all Delta and Delta Connection flights worldwide. “There are no restrictions placed on the product with the exception that it can only be used with our express products and must be declared at the time of acceptance.”
     “It’s a neat device,” Mr. Shah added.
     “We have worked with OnAsset for more than a year to evaluate their technology and are happy to accept the GPS device within our customer’s shipments,” says Wally Devereaux, (right) Director of Cargo Sales & Marketing for Southwest Airlines.


     The Frankfurt-based general sales agent expects 2012 to be a tough year for the global cargo industry due to weak markets, financial instabilities, incalculable political risks, rising energy costs, and the ongoing European crisis. Despite these critical external circumstances, however, ATC’s CEO, Ingo Zimmer, is confident that his agency will notably increase its turnover and financial results in the twelve months ahead compared to “the very successful outcome we achieved in 2011.”
     “We expect our enterprise to generate further business due to new airline contacts, and also to the additional frequencies that some of our carriers have put into the market, providing more capacity that we can fill with air freight,” says an optimistic Herr Zimmer.
     It all started in 1971 in Switzerland, when ATC Aviation Services was introduced. At that time, forwarders and airlines hardly knew what a cargo general sales agent was. ATC was a pioneer and trailblazer, paving the way for other contenders to step into this business.
     Since then, the company has generated an annual turnover of more than 250 million euros. In some markets, says CEO Zimmer, “we rank among the top players in terms of uplifted tonnage.”
     One example is Switzerland, where ATC accounts for nearly the same air freight volume that home carrier Swiss WorldCargo is transporting annually. Germany is another stronghold. There, Zimmer and his team are responsible for filling the cargo compartments or main decks of some fifteen capacity providers, among them All Nippon Airways, Ethiopian Airlines, Etihad Airways, Royal Air Maroc. All across Europe, more than 60 airlines rely on ATC’s cargo services, with some agreements being valid in only one country, says Ingo. Finnair’s contract for the Belgian market and the GSA’s representation of Air China in Switzerland are just two examples that illustrate these sorts of local agreements.
     Looking back, Zimmer says that joining ATC more than 20 years ago “was the best decision I have ever made.” Europe’s GSA landscape then was still in its infancy, with airlines considering the few players as barely qualified. “In those days, we all had a severe image problem,” Ingo recalls. The local managements of some airlines fostered this attitude, “because they considered the general sales agents as representing a loss of their influence and even a threat to their existence.”
     Mounting cost pressures, however, increasingly forced the carriers to rethink their strategy. Consequently, cargo sales agents were no longer regarded as interlopers, but as necessary business partners instead.
     “We all were in a gold-rush mood in those days,” he says. Dozens of start-ups popped up like mushrooms and stepped into the sales business, although some of them only had unrealistic ambitions and poor market knowledge.
     Currently, an estimated two-dozen sales agencies are operating in Germany; the majority, however, act as niche players or regional agents. This is mainly because of financial reasons, since letters of credit, IT and labor costs for qualified staff are a big burden that not everybody can easily shoulder. “This is quite impossible for small local operators,” Zimmer confirms.
     In contrast, there are the big boys like his ATC, the ECS group, Air Logistics and Kales. These four are Europe’s top dogs who call the shots and are considered first adoptees by the capacity providers. They benefit from a general trend in aviation that long-haul passenger services are increasingly complemented by freighter flights. More main deck capacity means higher loads and revenues. A typical example, says Ingo, is Abu Dhabi-headquartered Etihad, which offers passenger flights to Frankfurt, Munich and Dusseldorf and in addition deploys A330 freighters four times weekly to Frankfurt-Hahn airport. “These flight offerings provide us many uplift possibilities.”
     A key success factor for ATC was its decision, made some years ago, to follow their customer airlines and expand globally by establishing offices in India and South Africa. “The next markets on our agenda are South and North America,” Ingo announces.
     For the years ahead, Ingo expects consolidation to accelerate, leaving only two or three global GSA groups in the market. He has no doubt that his enterprise will be one of them.
Heiner Siegmund/Flossie


     GSA Cargo Essence is proud to announce a new agreement with LAN CARGO as its GSA in 6 states of the United States—Texas, Colorado, Oklahoma, Kansas, Utah and Louisiana. LAN CARGO serves as a far-reaching company in the worldwide cargo industry, and this agreement will enable LAN to continue growing inside the United States. Cargo Essence’s main office in Miami, FL will be expanded with an additional office location in Houston, TX.
     Claudio Silva, President Cargo Essence says, "customers in the southwest USA region will benefit from LAN Cargo’s excellent product and service offerings into Latin America."
Contact: csilva@cargoessence.com


     Back in 1938, Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia wanted to build an airport in North Beach, Queens in New York City in order to bring the Air Mail-carrying airlines to New York. His first step was to apply pressure on the Postmaster at the 34th Street Manhattan Post Office where the Newark mail was processed every night.
     When that did not work, “Hizzoner” cut a deal with American Airlines to move its corporate offices from Chicago to New York, where the carrier would be the biggest tenant at the new airport.
     Well, as it turned out, American Airlines made the move and actually kept its corporate set up in Manhattan until the 1970s, when it moved to Texas.
     But it was the expertise of AA that got the airport at North Beach built and opened on time for the World's Fair of 1939.
     Well, what goes around comes around (as they say), and right now in January 2012, American Airlines Cargo (AA Cargo) is back on top in New York City as the number one cargo carrier by tonnage at New York’s JFK International Airport.
The airline handled more than 115,000 tons of cargo, which represents 9.1 percent of total cargo handled at the airport, year-to-date through October 2011.
     “American Airlines is proud to be the pacesetter in cargo-handling at JFK,” said Art Torno, American Airlines Vice President New York.
     “This growth can be attributed to our expansion at JFK and is part of our ongoing commitment to New York, a market we have proudly served for more than 80 years.”
     “American’s recent investments in our cargo facilities in Building 79 at JFK further support our commitment to New York and its cornerstone role in our global network,” said Dave Brooks, President, American Airlines Cargo Division.
     Somewhere, Mayor LaGuardia, “The Little Flower” whose presence is still felt at the airport that carries his name, is smiling and telling everybody that American is still the class of the airline business and that he saw all of this coming a long time ago.
     No argument from us . . .



     There is this wonderful charity and social organization that has been in operation at John F. Kennedy Airport since 1970 called The Semantics. John Dailey started it at the gateway when he was the owner of Karr Ellis Freight Forwarders, a company founded in 1919 that remains headquartered at JFK and is still in business today.
     John served as The Semantics’ first President.
     When you speak of a life well lived, and someone from the air cargo business that did some good things over an extended period of time, John Dailey instantly comes to mind.
     John Dailey died peacefully on January 2, 2012, at age 94.
     John was an employee, then later owner, of Karr, Ellis & Co., Inc. for a total of over 50 years.
     After serving in the U.S. Army during World War II from 1941 to 1945, John returned to civilian life and a job in the sea freight forwarding business in the booming Port of New York, landing a job at Karr Ellis through a childhood friend.
     In the late 1950’s, at the insistence of his largest customer who had moved over some of their consignments to air, John opened up an airport office at JFK to handle the customer’s airfreight exports.
     It was the start of what turned out to be a 40-plus-year career, Idlewild to JFK, at an airport where John would leave an indelible legacy of service.
     As the air freight business at Karr Ellis grew, John bought out the original owner, Alder Ellis, with two partners and over time ended up with sole ownership of the company.

     In 1970, John was one of an original group of airport business leaders to create the idea for a social benevolence organization that became The Semantics, which has continued with John’s original vision of “Fun, Frolic and Benevolence” and of helping others.
     He was the first President and remained active in the association for many years, helping to build The Semantics into the successful organization it still is today.
     John was an innovator in the evolvutionary days of airfreight, becoming well known and respected as an iconic industry leader in air cargo, an early supporter and member of CNS and one of the special people who thought of doing good work to make air cargo better.
     His son-in-law, the current President & CEO of Karr Ellis, Ray Walsh, remembers John:
     “I began working with John in 1989 after marrying his daughter a couple of years earlier, and had the privilege of learning the business from him since I had no background in logistics (as it is called today), only some management experience in other industries and an MBA under my belt.
     “John was a voracious reader and absorbed any and all industry and non-industry literature he could get his hands on, and was only too eager to apply this knowledge to his business and hand it down to his employees,” Mr. Walsh said.
     “He ran his business as he lived his life, with personal integrity, generosity and the utmost respect for those who worked with and for him.
     “I was fortunate to be able to work with John for almost two decades (he came to the office even after officially retiring in 1997) and am hopeful that I will continue to bring honor to his legacy as Karr Ellis approaches its centennial year in 2019.”
     John Dailey is survived by his wife of 53 years, Margaret (Peggy), his daughter, Laurie Walsh, son Kevin, and seven grandchildren, whom he adored.


Get On Board Air Cargo News FlyingTypers
For A Free Subscription
Click Here To Subscribe


If You Missed Any Of The Previous 3 Issues Of FlyingTypers
Click On Image Below To Access